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How do we know what Steiner said?

The historical sources for analyzing the development of Rudolf Steiner‘s thought have been collected by the Rudolf Steiner Archive in Dornach, Switzerland, and have been published in the 330 volumes of complete works. Additional documents continue to be issued every year, and several important volumes from this time period were first published as recently as 2006. From accounts we have from his listeners, Rudolf...

Stenography and Steiner

As source material the stenographic records of Rudolf Steiner‘s early lectures are both invaluable and problematic. Stenographic notes are a system of shorthand markings that allow the stenographer to write as fast as people speak. These stenographic notes must then be reconstructed into conventional written sentences. For many of Rudolf Steiner’s early works we have the reconstruction but not the original...

Eric P. Wijnants and the problem of pseudo-scholar...

Back in April 2005 I wrote a blog entry titled “How Not to Write Occult History” about a website I came across the was full of information, but free of footnotes. As a historian, I commented that the site was useless, because without citations it was just a bunch of opinions that could not be verified. The whole thing had a suspicious feeling to it, which I summarized as: The irony is immense. For someone who purports to...

Helmuth von Moltke and the Origins of the First Wo...

Helmuth von Moltke and the Origins of the First World War
By Annika Mombauer
Reviewed by Daniel Hindes

Explanations for the start of the First World War fall primarily into three categories. Fault is assigned either to the Germans, the English, or to everybody. The heart of the case against the Germans is that they clearly wanted a war and conducted their diplomacy accordingly. The case against England is built around evidence that the British Empire intentionally provoked Germany. And the case for blaming all sides incorporates the above facts and more. Frequently the view you find correct depends on national background, with the Allies blaming Germany exclusively, which is easy enough to do. Germans frequently point out the central role England played, especially in not de-escalating. And sober heads everywhere can see how it is possible that both views contain elements of the truth.

Star in the East: Krishnamurti, the Invention of a...

Star in the East: Krishnamurti, the Invention of a Messiah By Roland Vernon Reviewed by Daniel Hindes I got this book off half.com for a dollar (plus shipping). I got it because I am generally interested in Krishnamurti and the early history of the Theosophical Society through my interest in Rudolf Steiner. Steiner got his start as the General Secretary of the German branch of the Theosophical Society, before he and his...

More thoughts on Holocaust Denial

Question everything… but then listen to the answers. Recently I’ve come across a few vague Holocaust denials. Rather than explicitly state that the Holocaust did not happen, they simply "raise questions" about the "accepted versions" about what happened. When outrage ensues, they do the intellectual equivalent of shrugging innocently and say, "What’s wrong with asking...